Y'all, y'all, y'all.
Those of you FB peeps already know this, but I had ANOTHER tire go flat on the interstate this week. Back passenger's side.
Wednesday night, to be exact. Just like last time. Except this time, it was dark, and getting cold, and Jason wasn't with me.
And instead of choir practice, I was on my way to Courtney's visitation.
Thankfully, I was able to pull off at an exit and into a well-lit gas station parking lot, and not have to sit on the side of the dark highway.
Let's be clear - I am not completely incapacitated when it comes to doing things on my car. I have had knowledge of how to change a tire, but since I've never had to actually do it, that lesson that was given nearly 18 years ago has tarnished a bit with age.
So, I call Jason, hoping to have him walk me through the process. No answer. His phone goes straight to voice mail.
I called my dad, and he said it would just be easier if he came up and helped me. We were about 15 minutes from where he was.
Since his stroke, his physical capabilities are not what they used to be. So, I tried to get the car jacked up and the lug nuts loosened before he got there.
Thanks to the inferior, factory-supplied tire iron, however, that was just not meant to be.
Thanks to a nice young man named Scott, though, it did get done - he and his wife and three kids were getting gas, and saw me, and he came over and changed my tire - before my dad even got there!
(Not to worry, though, it's a good thing he was coming, because we left the plastic lug nut covers there, and I remembered about the time he was getting of the exit to turn around, so they were not lost after all! Hooray!)
Anna Marie was crying about being late to her Missionettes class for the first time, but given the circumstances, they didn't even have a lesson - the teacher had the girls each make a card for Courtney's five-year-old daughter Madison, who isn't even in that class.
(Anna Marie's had horses. I have no idea why.)
Courtney's visitation was incredible. Pink flowers were everywhere. I stood in line for nearly half an hour to get to where she was, and instead of sorrow, I felt an incredible sense of peace once I got up there. This sounds so odd, but seeing how good she looked - and she really did look good - made me realize she was at peace, so I was too.
Jason and I went to the funeral yesterday, and I left both inspired and ashamed of how petty I can sometimes be.
Courtney was so sick over the past five years, yet she never wasted one minute asking "why me?" or getting bitter. She had a newborn when she was diagnosed, and she spent the next five years savoring every minute she had left and making sure Madison had good memories. I am so thankful she lasted this long, so that her daughter would be old enough to have some recollection of her. One of the most touching things I saw yesterday was at the end, when Courtney's husband Robert walked out of the sanctuary with a sleeping Madison on his shoulder. She was wearing the most beautiful pink poofy dress.
(Did I mention she's a red head too? Yeah, that makes me just a little more biased!)
Jason figured out yesterday upon closer inspection that I do indeed need a new tire. Not only am I thankful that Scott helped me, but I'm also thankful that we had that flat over the summer so that I knew what that awful sound was, and so that the spare (which had been flat the first time) would be in better shape.
I started to worry for about half a second yesterday. Do I have the funds for a new tire right now? In the words of that sage teacher Whitney Houston, "HECK to the NAW." But after witnessing Courtney's courage and faith over the past two years, how can I get upset about driving on a donut tire for another few days? If she can leave such a legacy that the pastor pulled out a pair of boxing gloves at her service, saying that they reminded him of her spirit, surely I can let God help me figure something out about a stupid tire.
I mean, really, y'all.